At the wilder fringes, road cyclists obsess over weight like jockeys do – perhaps even more so, since at least horse racers don't need to pedal their steeds up hills. Having shaved weight off the bicycle itself – at remarkable expense – the cyclist devotedly follows the latest diet. After all, losing five pounds by eating frugally is cheaper than finding the same mass saving by replacing bicycle steel and aluminium with titanium and carbon fibre. Useful equipment, such as bicycle pumps, spare tubes and emergency tools also fall under the weight-watcher's severe gaze – all must be carried, all...

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